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Joe Biden admits to voter fraud? This video was taken out of context

In a misleading clip viewed over 7 million times online, Joe Biden seems to admit to widespread voter fraud. The full video interview refutes this claim. (Screenshots: Twitter)
In a misleading clip viewed over 7 million times online, Joe Biden seems to admit to widespread voter fraud. The full video interview refutes this claim. (Screenshots: Twitter)
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In a video shared widely online, Democratic presidential candidate and former vice president Joe Biden says that he and the Obama administration have put together “the most extensive and inclusive voter fraud organisation in the history of American politics”. But was he talking about an organisation that commits voter fraud or prevents it? Although it may look like Biden just admitted to a voter fraud scheme, this misleading video was taken out of context.

On October 24, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany tweeted a truncated clip of Biden with the caption: “BIDEN ADMITS TO VOTER FRAUD!”

In the shared clip, Biden says: “Secondly, we’re in a situation where we have put together, and you guys did it for President Obama’s administration before this, we have put together, I think, the most extensive and inclusive voter fraud organisation in the history of American politics.”

McEnany’s post was retweeted more than 30 thousand times and the interview clip has been viewed more than 7.8 million times on Twitter.

The White House press secretary tweeted this misleading video of Joe Biden to over one million followers.

A Republican National Committee Twitter account, “RNC Research”, initially posted the cut clip out of context on October 24. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has tweeted about this deceptive clip at least five separate times, even adding “Rigged election?” to the online debate. He was joined by his son Eric Trump, several congressmen as well as other political figures in sharing the misleading video.

Countless others shared the clip online, calling it a gaffe, a “moment of clarity” or an admission of guilt.

In an October 24 post on Twitter, a user alleges that Biden admits to “building a widespread voter fraud operation”.

An October 27 post on Twitter claims that Biden admitted to a “voter fraud ring”.

Social media users characterized this admission as a slip of the tongue on Biden’s part. However, a closer look at the source of this interview reveals that, instead of admitting to organising voter fraud, Biden is clearly describing measures taken to combat it.

 

Taken out of context

This video shows legitimate, undoctored footage of Joe Biden in an interview on a left-leaning American podcast called “Pod Save America”. However, the video that went viral online is only 24 seconds of a 25-minute interview with the former vice president.

On October 24, Pod Save America published a 26-minute interview with Joe Biden.

At 17:49, podcast host Dan Pfeiffer asks Biden what his message is to people who are yet to vote, as well as those who have already voted. Biden responds by telling people to make a plan to vote if they haven’t yet, due to the prevalence of voter suppression.

“The Republicans are doing everything they can to make it harder for people to vote – particularly people of colour – to vote,” Biden says.

At 19:12, we can hear Biden’s now-viral statement about “the most extensive and inclusive voter fraud organisation”, set up during the Obama administration. However, the statement is followed by a reassurance that Democrats will ensure a fair election despite President Trump’s ongoing allegations of electoral fraud.

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It becomes clear, when his answer is heard in its entirety, that Biden is referring to an organisation that counters voter fraud when he says “voter fraud organisation”. The organisation he refers to is the Civic Engagement and Voter Protection team of the Democratic National Committee.

The program aims to combat voter fraud and discrimination through a website, IWillVote, and a hotline, which Biden further details in the full interview. These programs were active during the Obama administration and have been ramped up for the 2020 election, which Biden refers to at the beginning of the viral clip, albeit somewhat confusingly.

“What the president is trying to do is discourage people from voting by implying that their vote won't be counted,” Biden goes on to say. “We’re going to challenge it and all these things.”

He goes on to tell people who suspect they are victims of voter fraud or suppression to call a hotline in order to receive help from a lawyer.

The hotline he mentions – 833-DEM-VOTE – exists to answer questions about “felon disenfranchisement, voter purging, poll worker misconduct, voter machines, accessibility, and more”.

Therefore, once we see this clip in its full context, it’s clear that Biden is not admitting to a huge voter fraud scheme. Instead, he is telling Americans how they can report voter fraud through a national program set up by the Democratic Party.

Article written by Pariesa Young

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